Who is Stephanie Grisham?
Stephanie Grisham is an American White House official who was named the 30th White House press secretary, as well as White House Communications Director, in late June 2019. The First Lady of the United States, Melania Trump, announced via her twitter handle that Grisham will be replacing her predecessor Sarah Sanders. Prior to that, Stephanie was working as the communications director for the First Lady. She was previously a member of Donald Trump's presidential transition team and served temporarily as the deputy press secretary for Sean Spicer after Trump won in the 2016 Presidential elections. She also worked for Mitt Romney's presidential campaign in 2012. She served as the spokeswoman of the Arizona House of Representatives Republican caucus, Arizona House speaker David Gowan, Arizona attorney general Tom Horne, as well as the spokeswoman for AAA Arizona. She independently worked as a press coordinator for Pope Francis's visit to Philadelphia in 2015.
Rise to Stardom
Stephanie Grisham has worked closely with various members of the Republican Party in Arizona for a long time. She was the spokeswoman for AAA Arizona in 2007, and later served as the spokeswoman for Arizona attorney general Tom Horne. She also worked as a spokesperson for the Arizona House of Representatives Republican caucus and Arizona House speaker David Gowan.
Stephanie Grisham first gained large-scale exposure after she started working as a press aide to Donald Trump's 2016 Presidential Campaign in late 2015. She initially helped set up Trump’s Arizona rallies, but eventually worked on rallies outside of Arizona as well, even months at a stretch, staying away from her kids. Following Trump’s win, she was named special adviser for operations and later became the deputy press secretary for Sean Spicer in the West Wing of the White House. She was later moved r to the East Wing, joining First Lady Melania Trump's office as her communications director in March 2017, which reportedly made the President remorseful due to her sense of loyalty and skill at handling the press.
On June 25, 2019, Melania Trump announced via Twitter that Grisham replaced Sarah Sanders as White House press secretary and White House Communications Director. President Trump, told reporters in the Oval office that the appointment was expected as she was well-liked by both White House officials and journalists, and has been with Trump since the early days of his campaign.
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Controversies & Scandals
Soon after Stephanie Grisham's appointment as White House press secretary, news outlets started to dig into her past actions to justify her new role. While some pointed out her loyalty towards the President and her long association with his campaign, others were quick to note that Grisham has been a proven liar – which was the most significant qualification for her current role, taking into account the track record of her predecessors.
Her past controversial career in Arizona resurfaced, as former legislator Bruce Wheeler mentioned how "she was always trying to deflect and protect the speaker" while in service of David Gowan, often "not answering important questions and providing critical information when requested". 'The Interpret' called her a "demonstrable liar" by putting the First Lady's words against her own. While she had blatantly lied saying there was "no hidden message" in Melania Trump's jacket sporting the words "I really don’t care. Do U?" during her visit to migrant kids in detention, the First Lady later told ABC News that it "was kind of a message".
Stephanie was previously accused of overstepping the boundaries separating official and campaign duties while working for Tom Horne. She has also been warned for tweeting campaign slogan from her official account in July 2018.
On a personal level, Stephanie Grisham was charged with driving under the influence, speeding, and driving with an invalid license in 2013, even though the charges were reduced to reckless driving following plea bargain. She was again charged with driving under the influence in December 2015, to which she pleaded guilty.
Family & Personal Life
Stephanie Grisham, previously known as Stephanie Ann Sommerville, was born in 1977 in Arizona, United States. She married Danny Don Marries, evening news anchor for KOLD News 13 (CBS) in Tucson, on April 7, 1997 in Nevada. The couple has a son named Kurtis Marries who graduated from high school in May 2017. According to court documents from early 2000s, Stephanie and Danny later separated.
Stephanie Grisham has another son, Jake, but the identity of his father is not known. Stephanie told in an interview that she had stepped down from her position as then Press Secretary Sean Spicer’s deputy to be able to spend more time with her kids, specially the younger one. She rather switched to the First Lady’s office as she could take her son with her, had less hours to work, and could also work from home if needed.